Daugava River, Riga
It is worth to see, just walk near the Daugava river bank and watch how big that river is, how nice bridges around, modern buildings.
Especially I liked architecture of bridges - Vansu bridge, Akmens bridge… and it is so much time to go though bridge from one side of river to another, but worth just to see panorama - castle, church spires.
The river that floats through Riga is called Daugava. The origin of Daugava is in the Valdaj Mountains (in Russia) and the mouth is in the Golf of Riga. The river is 1020 km long. In Latvia there are three hydroelectric dams in Daugava.
Daugava was used by the Viking when they started their journey to Constantinople, and during the medieval times it was used by the Hanseatic league, making Riga an important trading city.
The first bridge in Riga, across the Daugava, was built in 1701.
The River Daugava is quite wide and has even some islands. Took a cruise on one of the river boats by the old town peer. The boat went just up to the TV tower and back and it took about a couple of hours. Lager beer and snacks were available on the boat. The weather was nice so it was ok but you can certainly see the same sights also just by walking along the river banks. It's just a bit nicer to lean back and let the scenery glide slowly by while enjoying the local lager.
The Daugava is the river which flows through Riga, and splits Vecriga from Kliversala. In winter it is usually frozen, and the ice apparently thick enough for people to walk on and also to drill holes through in order to do some ice fishing, seemingly a popular pastime in Riga and its environs. There are three main bridges over the Daugava in the centre of Riga with one being a rail bridge and the other two being road bridges including the Vansu tilts - a rather impressive suspension bridge.
There's a long 'promenade' along the Daugava river, to the west of Riga's old town. It certainly runs from where the canal near the Central Market joins the river up to Vansu Bridge, and I'm pretty sure it goes further north as well. I just didn't walk that far!
I really enjoyed my evening stroll, watching families out for their evening strolls and bike rides, looking at the bridges (I noticed the remains of a previous bridge next to the existing railway bridge), the boats and the birds.
The huge, dramatic and very 'Soviet' 'Revolution Monument' on the riverside between the railway bridge and Akmens Tilts (Stone Bridge) commemorates the Russian Revolution of 1905. I believe it is one of the few pieces of Soviet-era sculpture which remain in Riga. It's worth seeing for itself, even if you don't walk very far along the riverside.
The Railway Bridge connects the two banks of Riga that are divided by the Daugava River.
I happened to see this Bridge when I was having a look at the central markets.
The Bridge was built in 1872, and was used by pedestrians and horses, in addition to trains. During WWI the bridge was destroyed, then in the 1930s it was reconstructed and could also be used by automobiles. During WWII it was destroyed again and only became usable in 1951.
The Shroud Bridge, built in 1981 during the Communist regime, is one of 5 Bridges that cross the River Daugava River and connects the two sides of the city. It is 595 meters long and looks quite attractive at night time.
I took a shot at this Railway Bridge on Daugava River. The shape of the bridge look like several mini Sydney harbor bridge joint together. The iron bridge was damaged in both World War and was rebuilt both times.
The Stone Bridge (Akmens tilts) is a low, road and pedestrian bridge that offers great views of the old town, and takes you to the AB Dam on the opposite bank, which has even better views. Despite its name, the Stone Bridge is not very old, dating back only to 1955. The original name of October Bridge is more fitting, but maybe not politically correct.
It's easy to reach by foot, but you have to first negotiate quite a few underpasses and stairs.
Offering some of the best views of the Old Town, Riga's AB Dam sits on the west bank of the Daugava river. The dam was originally built in the 1880s to protect Riga from flooding. There were plans to destroy it, but it was saved in the 1960s and rebuilt. Today it's a little bit scruffy, and in need of some regenerative love, but it's also quiet and shy of people, unlike the old town.
Possibly the most impressive of Riga's bridges, and certainly one with the best views, it was originally built in 1981, during Soviet times, and named Gorky Bridge, after Maxim Gorky the Soviet author. It's a cable stayed bridge and over half a kilometer long, and if you walk to the middle and look back, you'll get some great photos.
The whole river was totally frozen when I visited; people had even built snowmen on it. Judging by the many footprint paths in the snow, you didn't need the bridge to cross on foot, although I didn't want to risk it. About half way across the cold, frozen air coursing down the Daugava river made my head spin. Even at -5 in the city, it was noticeably colder on the bridge.
Normally a wide expanse of blue, the Daugava River had been frozen so long by the time I arrived the first time, it was knee deep snow. This gave it a magical look, with a smooth surface you won't normally see. Many people were out on the snow, with sleds, snowmobiles, and just on foot. Some had even written messages in the snow, all watched over by the glass boxed statue of St. Christopher, the patron saint of travellers watching over the ferries as they come and go.
The Daugava is a major European river, starting its journey in Russia, passing through Belarus and Latvia before exiting into the Baltic Sea. It's one of the many freshwater sources that feeds the Baltic Sea and makes it the least salty sea on the planet.
The Daugava or Western Dvina is a river rising in the Valdai Hills, Russia, flowing through Russia, Belarus, and Latvia, draining into the Gulf of Riga in Latvia, an arm of the Baltic Sea. The total length of the river is 1,020 km (634 mi).
It is connected by a canal with Berezina and Dnieper rivers.
Though it's not the cleanest one I've ever seen....
Don't miss a walk over to the West Bank of the River Daugava, If for no other reason than to get the views back over the river to The Old City of Riga. We left The Old City and crossed over the suspension bridge (The Vansu Tilts), then made our way around the canal before returning to the river bank of the River Daugava to take our photo's before returning to The Old City of Riga over the next bridge south, The Akmens Tilts. Be warned, this is considerably further than it looks but still is a nice walk !!
Well boys and girls! Now I can proudly inform that this year during August 10th to 13th here in Riga will be Cutty Shark Tall Ships Races!!!! Hurrey!!!! Unfortunately our city council didn’t managed to finish all works necessary for this regatta, but one is sure – during three days those who are interested in sailing ships will find Riga as a heaven!
For now we know that here will gather about 70 ships from all around the world. Those three days will be accompanied by mass of parties and cultural events.
Informations will be updated weekly.